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After Dreaming

ISSUE:  Spring 1988
My kitchen’s steamier than Eden,
and the window’s just a wishing well.

The eyelids seem to whisper: gaze, then glaze.
It’s time to shut the senses down

the way the rich must bar the shutters
of their summer houses each September.

For now, my cup’s a bog and a ledge
that begs for my attention. Whoever calls

the children home must have known my mother.
Whoever huddles in the bushes must have known

who stammered there. I can almost see who shakes
the tree, and hear the thump of the boy who’s fallen.

The valley and the well, the fault the earthquake
seizes, they provide a home, private and familiar.

The world’s so small, I want to push myself aside.
The lip of the cup is not a lip to kiss.


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